Liver Spots + Itching = Cancer?

Have you ever heard of liver spots before? In case you haven’t, it is certain that age spots should be a more familiar term to you. The two names actually stand for the same thing, you can also call them brown spots, sun spots or solar lentigo. As the name “age spots” implies, they occur on one as the individual grows older and are generally associated with old age. There have been several concerns over the link between liver spots and  skin cancer. Some people are of the opinion that the skin condition can become cancerous if the affected person scratches them, but in actual fact it is not the scratching that is harmful, the fact that the liver spots are itchy is a warning sign that you should get them analysed by a skin specialist, as with any other changes to your skin.

The liver spot or age spot; depending on your preference, is caused by sunlight, or more specifically overexposure to UV rays from the sun. When the skin is exposed to the ultraviolet rays of the sun excessively, the accumulated exposure may lead to this skin condition later in life. They are called liver spots simply because the color of the brown spots formed by the skin condition have the same color as the liver. Anyone who enjoys exposure to the sun at a young age stands a very good chance of developing liver spots at a later age. This then shows how unsafe it may be to expose your unprotected skin regularly to the sunlight.

In all sense of the word, liver spots are not harmful at all. It is true that they are linked to cancerous growths on the skin, but this is because actinic keratosis is also linked to unprotected sun exposure and the two conditions are often seen together, but they are not a consequence of one another. It can be very painful to scratch the itchy liver spots. When you scratch the spot may become reddish and it may bleed. Despite all the above, the skin condition does still not turn to a cancerous growth. This should then remove any fear of one ending up with cancer simply by scratching the liver spots. This does not however mean it is ok to scratch the skin condition as you will damage your skin. It will be better if you simply look for a way to get the itchiness treated.

That said, if your liver spots are itchy, change color or bleed you should ask a doctor to check them.

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